By GREG RUSSELL, Register Staff Writer
Cooke County —
Having provided nearly 50,000 meals for Cooke County youth during 2012 through fundraisers, local Boys & Girls Club officials are helping pay their way through 2013 by hosting a fundraiser concert — the first in the organization’s history.
“Music For The Mind, Body & Soul” is set for 7 p.m. Friday, Feb. 22, at First Baptist Church Gainesville. The program is set to feature music by pipe organist John Dill and trumpeter Jason Webb, and admission is by donation only.
Proceeds benefit the county organization’s “After School Program,” where participating members receive a full meal per day and are also given opportunities to be involved in social programs. Cooke County Boys & Girls Club Executive Director Tricia West said Thursday that her organization’s budget runs up to $450,000 per year.
Events such as an annual golf tournament in October garner up to $50,000, but she admitted the concept of a concert fundraiser on behalf of “After School” hadn’t come up until recently.
“It’s something that came available,” West said. “They offered this and we thought, ‘We’ll take it.’ John Dill has a really good following in town, since he’s done so many organ concerts and maintains seven of the organs in town.”
West also said that throughout the county, Boys & Girls Club oversees nearly 3,000 members, and expenses add up.
“We have so many members and programs, not just in Gainesville, but also Valley View and Woodbine,” she said. “All that money plays into that too, as well as the basketball, football and softball programs.”
Staff and facility maintenance at the current Boys & Girls Club facility at 315 W. Hird St. require a huge share of the annual budget, and West said the organization is tentatively set to move into a $6 million facility on North Denton Street in Gainesville during late summer or fall.
The new and improved location is expected to enhance the youth programs, but expenses will only grow, and every incoming dollar helps.
“Anything that we get will be more than we have,” West said. “So we can’t lose. It’s a win-win if somebody wants to give us something, and it’s an opportunity to share the fact that we’re not just a sports program.”
For more information about the local Boys & Girls Club, call (940) 665-6527.
About John Dill
A North Texas native, Dill grew up in Gainesville and studied music at Baylor University. Following undergraduate studies, he studied music at the University of North Texas in Denton where he received a graduate degree in organ performance and choral conducting. He has taught music history and performance classes at North Central Texas College for more than 10 years, and currently serves as organist at Frisco’s Stonebriar Community Church.
About Jason Webb
A graduate of University of Central Oklahoma, Webb has performed numerous times with the President’s Own Marine Band in Washington, D.C., where he was recognized for his trumpet playing. Webb also toured for nine years with King’s Brass, a Christian ensemble based in Fort Wayne, Ind., where he played in more than 120 concerts per year throughout America. He currently serves as an audio engineer for Stonebriar Community Church in Frisco and directs the church’s brass ensemble.